“I always go to bed very early on New Year’s Eve because I don’t like New Year’s Eve. It’s the day I’m reliably in bed by 10 p.m. It doesn’t interest me as a festival,” says actor Matthias Brandt. He looks out from behind his glasses in a mixture of amusement and melancholy, which immediately makes you want to celebrate New Year’s Eve with him. Even if it’s only until 10 p.m. But that seems like a completely unreasonable wish. Also for his colleague Anke Engelke, who is sitting next to Brandt on the day before Christmas in Berlin and says it in a similar way to him. She is “not a New Year’s Eve woman”, “alcohol and swinging music” are not for her. She only loves parties where there are only people she knows. Nothing is expected of her.
Matthias Brandt and Anke Engelke have just shot a New Year’s Eve film. It’s called “Kurzschluss”, is 30 minutes long, and the screenplay by Claudius Pläging and Max Bierhals is so pointed and funny that “Dinner for One” can be history forever. At the turn of the year, “short circuit” should always be on TV from now on. Then Butler James would no longer have to stumble over a tiger’s head and would have peace and quiet. “Dinner for One” was a success in Germany, but interestingly it was a failure in England, says Matthias Brandt. You don’t find it funny there. “The two British actors, who have since passed away, are considered fourth or fifth guard there. And in England you tend to think: the Germans think that’s funny.” He doesn’t say that “Kurzschluss” has a good chance of making English people laugh too. It’s not out of the question.
Video: ARD, image: dpa
The film begins half an hour before twelve on New Year’s Eve in the anteroom of a bank branch and will not leave this anteroom again. Anke Engelke, with her updo, is Bettina Maurer, the mayor of a small town who was badly cut by an SUV driver while crossing the street and insulted him accordingly. On the opposite side, she just wants to get some money before she is supposed to ignite the official small town fireworks at the turn of the year. But when you withdraw, your bank card gets stuck in the machine. A man – the SUV driver from just now, clearly he parks his SUV directly in front of the automatic glass door of the branch – enters the anteroom. He also wants to withdraw money, is in a hurry, wants to quickly solve the obvious problem with the blocked ATM, pulls out of the mayor’s updo, which he doesn’t recognize as such, because he’s not from here, but from – watch out – Berlin, too brashly and too naturally encroaching on a hairpin with which he wants to fish the card out of the card slot. He nervously pokes around at the machine, causes a short circuit, whereupon not only does the machine no longer respond, but also the automatic door of the bank branch lobby no longer opens – and the two are locked in.